Factors affecting the recruitment and retention of linguists in the U.S. Army
Lucas, James R., Jr.
Mehay, Stephen L.
Barr, Donald R.
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This study examined influences on the enlistment and reenlistment decisions for linguists in the US Army. Some of the potential factors considered were: previous language experience, ethnicity, age, gender, and education level of the respondent. Data were obtained from enlisted Army students enrolled in training at the Defense Language Institute (DLI) in Monterey, California during the period April-May 1987. The analysis attempted to determine the differences, if any, that existed between the linguists surveyed and appropriate control groups. Results indicate that the three most prominent reasons given for enlisting were: a chance to better one's self, to earn money for college, and to receive training in a skill. Results further indicate that monetary benefits such as the Army's new linguist specialty pay and increased reenlistment bonuses strongly influence the soldier's reenlistment decision. Significant differences were noted for many of the demographic and background variables when comparisons were made with the 1985 ARI New Recruit Survey and USAREC's 1986 report, The Measurement of Student Attitudes Toward Enlistment Incentives and Career Opportunities.
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